This is the 3rd book in the "Crimes of Fashion" series about Lacey Smithsonian, fashion writer for a Washington, D.C. newspaper. Each book gets better and this one was fun to read and lots better than some of the idiotic cozies that abound. The series reminds me of Elaine Viets Mystery Shopper and Dead End Jobs books.
What if a radical plastic surgery makeover changed its subject's personality for the worse? Byerrum asks in her playful third Crime of Fashion mystery. Street-smart D.C. fashion reporter Lacey Smithsonian meets über diva Amanda Manville (a former ugly duckling whose appearance on TV's The Chrysalis Factor made her a supermodel overnight), while covering Amanda's new clothing line for the Eye Street Observer. Amanda's tendencies to slap assistants and take credit for her sister Zoe's designs are no big sin compared to the death threats Amanda receives dailyand she asks Lacey to investigate. After a murder occurs, Lacey's sheltered mother and sister drop in, putting the brakes on Lacey's romantic weekend with protective cop Vic Donovan and making the case a family affair. A revolving door of quirky characters like donut-scarfing "death-and-dismemberment" reporter Harlan Wiedemeyer keep the plot skipping happily along, and inside jokes about Burberry accessories in Washington are snicker-worthy.
If looks could kill, this makeover might be murder... -- With a messy murder case in the hothouse world of haute couture just behind her and a long-delayed romantic weekend just ahead of her, Lacey Smithsonian promises her once-a-cop-always-a-cop boyfriend that this weekend she'll definitely stay out of trouble. But of course trouble follows Lacey like static cling. She's scheduled to interview reality TV makeover success story Amanda Manville, now a supermodel diva from Hell. The inside skinny on Amanda is that she's a prima prima donna who might have a deadly secret. But the daunting 'Frankendiva' begs Lacey to help stop an elusive and frightening stalker. As if she doesn't have enough trouble on her hands, with her mother and her sister bent on an extreme makeover on Lacey's life. Because being sensible is for someone who wears ugly shoes, Lacey steps smartly into the path of drive-by shootings, speeding stolen cars (her own!), and the office jinx. And she learns that sometimes makeovers can be murder...
Lacey's Fashion Bite of the Day:
Life is not a dress rehearsal! You're the star of your own life, aren't you? So dress like the glamorous leading lady, not the understudy--or like a drab extra in a dreary foreign film, or one of those bad Washington thrillers